DEFM540 Week 1 forum replies

DEFM540 Week 1 forum replies:PART 2 Replies: identify each separately by name in ( ), consisting of 3 separate minimum 100-word replies. Please refer to DEFM540 Week 1 Part 1 Forum for the weeks readings, learning objectives, and general reference notes in order to reply

DEFM540 Week 1 forum replie

Get Your Custom Essay Written From Scratch
Are You Overwhelmed With Writing Assignments?
Give yourself a break and turn to our top writers. They’ll follow all the requirements to compose a premium-quality piece for you.
Order Now

 

PART 2

Replies: identify each separately by name in ( ), consisting of 3 separate minimum 100-word replies.

 

Please refer to DEFM540 Week 1 Part 1 Forum for the weeks readings, learning objectives, and general reference notes in order to reply.

 

(1jperr)

Respond with minimum 100 words, to include 1 direct question.

Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition by Eckerd and Snider, was quite an interesting article to read while I was trying to determine the fundamentals of DoD acquisition program managers.  They discussed quite a few traits that Congress legislated and the department instituted to professionalize both the military and civilian DoD acquisition work force.  These ranged from lengthening the tours of program managers to specialized training and experience, however their analysis did not show any difference between the various acquisition professionals when they were evaluated against the department’s measurable criteria for cost schedule, and performance targets (Eckerd & Snider. 2017). They also reference Preston’s (2011) observation that DoD program managers don’t manage acquisition programs in the traditional sense.  They actually manage the defense contractors who manage the DoD acquisition programs.  Expanding on this, the fundamentals of DoD program managers would be managing the budget they are appropriated, managing the people ranging from defense contractors to department employees, and trying to manage the politics associated with the various Congressional views to supporting their military department’s position. Reviewing Department of Defense Directive (DoDD) 5000.01, states that acquisition leaders, which would include program managers, are required to implement the “fundamentals of design, manufacturing, and management” in order to produce systems that are reliable and maintainable.

 

Our lesson this week described what I would consider the fundamentals of traditional program management as planning, controlling, and measuring the facets of the program that produce measurable outcomes.  Reviewing the Fundamentals of Project Management by Heagney, we learn that the Project Management Institute says the fundamentals are culture, talent and process.  Synthesizing the differences from all of the sources I reviewed, I would conclude that DoD program managers are trained similar to traditional program managers and would learn the same processes and fundamentals.  However, they are able to control less of the process, while having a far greater number of external forces influencing their resources.

 

Department of Defense Directive (DoDD) 5000.01. (2020, September 9) The Defense Acquisition System. https://www.esd.whs.mil/DD/.

Eckerd, A., & Snider, K. (2017). Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition. American Review of Public Administration, 47(1), 36-57. doi:10.1177/027504015596376

Heagney, J. (2016). Fundamentals of Project Management (5th ed.). AMACOM.

Preston, C. (2011, April 1). Telephonic interview by Eckerd, A. & Snider, K. [Digital recording]. Alexandria, VA.

 

(2jbert)

Respond with minimum 100 words, to include 1 direct question.

I trust you all have had a wonderful week thus far. Our task this week was to discuss the difference between traditional commercial program management fundaments and the fundamentals of DoD acquisition program managers. It was interesting to read Eckerd and Snider’s article, Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition (2017), as they talked about how Department of Defense (DoD) Program Managers (PMs) do not necessarily manage programs as the title implies. They instead go on to explain how defense contractors are in charge of managing the actual DoD acquisition programs. A PM in the article stated, “We’re not doing program management anymore…We’re managing people, budget, and politics…I don’t even do what I was really trained to do…from the technical side of program management” (Eckerd & Snider, 2017). Unfortunately, this is entirely true, and I see it in my day-to-day job. My PM is in charge of multiple projects, and we have active duty (AD) senior leaders who are given the title of PM within the DoD however, they are truly just the middleman for the higher-level officers that we maintain contact with which unfortunate for them. If the senior leader that I work with (on the military side) retires from the Navy and decides that he wants to become a civilian or contractor PM when he gets out, then it will be a difficult task to say the least. There are also several training and education differences among PMs on the civilian sector versus the DoD side. Contracted PMs must have a baseline education of a bachelor’s degree to begin working and are highly recommended to complete a master’s program before receiving any legitimate jobs (not mandatory though). They are also required to earn several certifications, one of them being the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification through the Project Management Institute (PMI). Another item that I thought was important to note was the high turnover rate among AD PMs compared to their contractor/civilian counterparts. It was noted within the article that due to promotions and assignment policies, officers encountered frequent rotation among a variety of positions and acquisition was (and may still be) perceived as a less than desirable career field as AD PMs “saw themselves as having nominal charge over their programs with little real authority due to the many overseers and stakeholders” (Eckerd & Snider, 2017). Contractors on the other hand can hold positions for much longer as it is a main career for them and not a secondary assigned duty like most service members have.

In sum, I would say that DoD contractors have a better grasp on DoD acquisitions. They are given much more authority and say in their position compared to their AD counterparts and have much more experience as well.

References

Eckerd, A., & Snider, K. (2017). Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition. American Review of Public Administration, 47(1), 36-57. https://doi.org/10.1177/0275074015596376

 

(3mboyz)

Respond Traditional commercial program management fundamentals are focused on performance measurement, market incentives, privatization, and deregulation (Eckerd & Snider, 2017, p. 37). Performance measurement is essentially measuring the outcome of a project and improving wherever necessary (Eckerd & Snider, 2017, p. 37). When the government fails to meet economic and organizational efficiency, privatization of public goods and contracts can improve the government’s decisions (Hefetz & Warner, 2004, pp. 171-172). However, when the environments change, governments can choose to back-in after they privatize a contract (Hefetz & Warner, 2004, p. 187). Commercial programs are also able to consider deregulation to improve competition and lessen market power, topics that government programs do not have to worry with (Dadzie & Ferrari, 2019, p. 330). Regarding incentives, these may occur as monetary or non-monetary (Alasseri et al, 2018, p. 49).

DoD acquisition program management fundamentals are separate from public management. In the first instance, DoD programs are appointed a manager to lead a program (Eckerd & Snider, 2017, p. 38). Reforms within Congress and the DoD also occur to enhance workforces that are responsible for carrying out a program (Eckerd & Snider, 2017, p. 38). Comparing to the traditional commercial program management fundamentals, it is not necessary for DoD program management to incentivize and deregulate. The DoD can employ measures and projects without needing to compete with another agency, as the DoD is a government organization without competition. However, the DoD should be concerned with performance measurement and may participate in privatization. One example of this being mandatory is found in DoDI 500.02, where the instruction mandates that operational testing and evaluation is required for all programs without conflicts of interest or bias (DoD, 2015, p. 101).

There is an interesting blend of topics that are available through traditional commercial program management and DoD program management. What should be considered are how the two entities are concerned with competition. With the DoD, there is no competition, as the entity is responsible for carrying out the necessities of the government. However, they do need the support of the People and Congress. On the other hand, private entities are not required to have approval from Congress or the citizens of the country. However, they are concerned with competition and how likely they could be beat out by this competition. It is interesting to see how the two can operate so differently. Essentially, the fundamentals of commercial program management are centered around competition, while the DoD’s fundamentals hinge on the operations of the country.

References

Alasseri, R., Rao, T. J., & Sreekanth, K. J. (2018). Conceptual framework for introducing incentive-based demand reponse programs for retail electricity markets. Energy Strategy Reviews, 19, 44-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esr.2017.12.001

Dadzie, J. K. & Ferrari, A. (2019). Deregulation, efficiency and competition in developing banking markets: Do reforms really work? A case study for Ghana. Journal of Banking Regulation, 20, 328-340. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41261-019-00097-x

Department of Defense. (2015). Operation of the defense acquisition system (DoD Instruction 5000.02).

Eckerd, A. & Snider, K. (2017). Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition. American Review for Public Administration, 47(1), 36-57. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0275074015596376

Hefetz, A. & Warner, M. (2004). Privatization and its reverse: Explaining the dynamics of the government contracting process. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 14(2), 171-190. https://doi.org/10.1093/jopart/muh012

with minimum 100 words, to include 1 direct question.

 

 

 

Week 1 Part 1 Content: What is the defense acquisition system

Emmet Fritch 11/2/17

Week 1 Discussion Discussion

Review each resource listed for this week (see below).  Answer the following question and debate the issues with other students.  Use library research articles (not blog sites or other Internet searched resources).

What are the differences between traditional commercial program management fundamentals and the fundamentals of DoD acquisition program managers?

 

Resources:

Videos

Defence Acquisition video

DoD Acquisition Process Overview a video lecture

Articles

Conroy Ii, T. L. (2016). Critical thinking: An overview of the defense acquisition system. Defense AT&L, 45(3), 23-25.

Eckerd, A., & Snider, K. (2017). Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition. American Review of Public Administration, 47(1), 36-57. doi:10.1177/027504015596376

 

Does the Program Manager Matter? New Public Management and Defense Acquisition.pdf

Critical thinking- An overview of the defense acquisition system.pdf

Week 1

Overview:

Welcome to Week 1.

Course Objective(s):

CO1: Analyze the fundamentals of defense systems acquisition management.

Weekly Objectives:

LO1: Understand the fundamentals of defense systems acquisition

Learning Material

The Learning Material section contains the weekly lesson along with readings, videos, and other material that conveys this week’s topics.

Week 1

Week 1

Program Management

The Department of Defense investigated the value of adding program management functions to DOD acquisition programs.   During the 20th century, the Packard Commission determined there was validity to the opinion; DOD acquisitions included excessively higher costs for common items.  Common items such as the $500 hammer and the $600 toilet seat were common phrases used by people with the opinion some acquisitions were not properly controlled.  The public was being “fleeced” according to many.

Various forms of program control were in place during the period under question by the Packard Commission.  However, as a result of the Packard Commission findings, a “new program management method,” similar to commercial program management was proposed.  The new is called the New Public Management (NPM) model.

Traditional program management deals with planning, controlling, and measuring program attributes, leading to measurable outcomes.  In the commercial environment, advantages of program management in free market competitive situations justify the role of program managers. In the government acquisition environment, some argue that the complexity of political and institutional pressure lead to complex program interactions not suitable for traditional commercial program management techniques. To deal with DOD complexities, program managers for large acquisitions act as overseers.  Following is a summary of characteristics of the NPM approach to DOD acquisition management.

Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA)

The Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) assumes the premise that program outcomes are improved when program managers trained in new acquisition techniques are appointed to oversee major defense acquisitions. The program managers exhibit the following characteristics:

They obtain training more relevant to institutional and political influences

They are formally educated

They have practical experience.

The underlying assumption is that with these characteristics, program outcomes will be more in line with initial expectations.

A question plaguing people familiar with the New Public Management model is factored to determine the degree outcomes are out of the program manager’s span of authority.  Program managers traditionally do not influence DOD structure, conditions of political pressure, such as budget control; and, program managers cannot influence partisan budget outcomes.

With the limitations mentioned above, the author’s reference below studied how perspectives on institutional factors compare perspectives when the New Public Management Model is in place. The authors reported on DOD acquisition trends by reviewing data from programs in the period from 1997 to 2010. A comparison of large commercial projects was compared to major defense acquisitions.

Commercial projects included Boston’s Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project.  DOD projects included the Air Force Peacekeeper (MX) missile program.  The authors present the percentage of programs with positive unit cost variance, mean unit cost variance, a percentage of programs in breach, and percentage of cases reviewed. The variables include outcomes with military and non-military program managers in charge.

One result of the study that is worth exploring are reasons the authors concluded prior literature (Etherton, 2011; Fox, 1984) was correct about differences in authority and outcomes between commercial and DOD program management.  A need exists for “operationalizing” control over political factors, for example.

References

Eckerd, A., & Snider, K. (2017). Does the program manager matter? New public management and defense acquisition. American Review of Public Administration, 47(1), 36-57. doi:10.1177/027504015596376

Etherton, J. (2011, March 23). Personal interview by the author [Digital recording]. McClean, VA.

Fox, J. R. (1984, September-October). Revamping the business of national defense. Harvard Business

Review, 50, 63-70.

Activities & Assessment

The Activities & Assessment section includes the activities and assessments for the week that provide you an opportunity to practice the material and then demonstrate what you’ve learned.